Studies have shown that African immigrants are more educated than Americans born in the United States.
“It’s a population that’s very diverse in its educational, economic and English proficiency profile,” said Jeanne Batalova, a senior policy analyst at the Migration Policy Institute think tank in Washington and coauthor of a report last year on sub-Saharan African immigrants in the U.S. “People came for a variety of reasons and at various times.”
African immigrants have a higher percentage of college-degree holders than Americans born in the U.S.
Batalova’s research found that of the 1.4 million who are 25 and older, 41% have a bachelor’s degree, compared with 30% of all immigrants and 32% of the U.S.-born population. Of the 19,000 U.S. immigrants from Norway — a country Trump reportedly told lawmakers is a good source of immigrants — 38% have college educations.
In addition, African immigrants are studying in-demand specialities like math and science, subjects that Americans born in the U.S. tend to shy away from. On a percentage basis, African immigrants also have a higher rate of education attainment in terms of graduate education.
The New American Economy study found that 1 in 3 of these undergraduate degrees were focused on science, technology, engineering and math — “training heavily in demand by today’s employers.” That report also found that African immigrants were significantly more likely to have graduate degrees. A total of 16% had a master’s degree, medical degree, law degree or a doctorate, compared with 11% of the U.S.-born population, Lim said.